We all know that brushing your teeth properly and regularly results in a healthy smile, but not doing that can affect more than just your teeth. The truth is, your oral health can affect both your physical and your mental health – and here’s how.
1.It can lead to cardiovascular problems
Studies have shown that gum inflammation can increase your risk of heart disease and stroke. This is because gum inflammation can lead to other types of inflammation throughout your body, which can then lead to cardiovascular disease. For example, one specific heart problem that is connected to poor oral hygiene, because it leads to increased levels of harmful bacteria inside the mouth, is endocarditis. If left untreated, it can lead to permanent heart damage. Additionally, poor oral hygiene also increases your risk of a fatal heart attack.
2. It can cause pregnancy issues
If you happen to be pregnant, you really want to take care of your teeth. If your gums get inflamed, your baby might be born too soon or not weighing enough. This can happen if there is too much harmful bacteria inside your mouth, which can be prevented by regular brushing. Needless to say, babies that are born pre-term can have medical issues, like respiratory problems. Moreover, studies have shown that pregnant women with gum disease are more likely to get gestational diabetes. So, if you are expecting, take extra care of your teeth.
3. It can lead to cancer
You probably already know that smoking can not only make your teeth yellow but also destroy your lungs. The good news, though, is that regardless of how long you’ve been smoking, quitting can greatly reduce your chances of getting cancer. If you need more reasons to quit, smoking can also make you lose your teeth sooner than you would naturally. This is because bad oral hygiene can lead to osteoporosis, which is a condition that makes your bones degrade. Eventually, this bone loss can weaken the bond between your teeth and your jaw, which then leads to tooth loss. So, besides ruining your smile and breath, smoking can lead to actual physical changes that, once they happen, can’t be fixed that easily. In this case, prevention is much better than cure.
4.It can lead to pneumonia
Besides lung cancer, another lung problem that can happen due to bad oral hygiene is pneumonia. This is because all the excess bacteria in your mouth can easily get to your lungs and cause infection. This infection can then lead to pneumonia, which in some cases can even be life-threatening. So, it’s safe to say that this is another thing you should prevent rather than deal with later. Ask yourself “where is the best dentist near me?”, and don’t hesitate to check your oral health if you start noticing any problems.
5. It can affect your confidence
Besides all the physical problems, having bad teeth can affect your confidence. When it comes to meeting new people, first impressions matter, and your smile can definitely leave a bad one. It can also affect your job opportunities, for the same reason. Not to mention that if you happen to be single and looking for a date, your first meetings might not go as planned if your smile is not up to the challenge. In short, since you can’t exactly avoid smiling in social situations, you want your smile to be the best it could be, as the way people react to you can depend on your smile.
6. It is connected to diabetes
Now, this works both ways in the sense that bad oral hygiene can lead to diabetes – but diabetes can also lead to oral health problems. Diabetes lowers your immunity, which increases your risk of all infections, including gum disease. On the other hand, studies have shown that those with gum disease can have trouble controlling their blood sugar levels. Therefore, you can easily get stuck in a vicious circle between these two medical issues.
To sum up, not taking care of your teeth can lead to problems that go beyond having bad teeth. From diabetes to low self-esteem, bad oral hygiene can affect you in many ways. So, take care of your teeth, brush them properly, get rid of bad habits such as smoking, don’t avoid your dentist, and you won’t have to worry about any of the above.